I think it’s safe to say that 2020 doesn’t look quite like we thought it would. Our world has drastically changed over the last few months and will continue to do so as we find our new normal. But even in the midst of uncertainty, we have seen so many great people and businesses come together to support our community during this time of need.
There are many reasons it is important for us as businesses to give back. We have the ability, and obligation, to help strengthen the community around us. No matter how big or small, each of us can work together to make a big impact. All it takes is one to start a ripple effect in taking the steps to make sure that our community stays strong and is taken care of.
- Whether through donations, volunteering, going the extra mile, or supporting local restaurants, there are so many ways to give back to the community as a business.
- Looking for gift ideas for clients or employees? Shop local! There are numerous local businesses that have many great corporate gifting options.
- Work with local non-profits for employee volunteer days. You can always find a place that is looking for volunteers, this is a great way to come together as a company while supporting the needs of the community.
- Share local non-profits/businesses that you work with on social media.
- Donate! We know this looks different for everyone, but this is essential to keeping many of these places up and running in order to take care of the people in our community.
Especially during times like these, places like Community Action House, Kid’s Food Basket, Community Foundation of Holland/Zeeland Area, Lakeshore Advantage, and everyone that works at the hospitals, are vital to making sure our community stays safe, healthy, and intact. They are working around the clock to make sure our people and businesses get the resources that they need. These places need our support, to ensure that they can continue to support the growing need.
To all of the essential workers and to everyone working hard to help support this great place we call home, thank you! We are proud to be a part of such a great community.
In today’s working environment, many business owners understand the benefits of employing a culture of collaboration within their organizations—regardless of whether team members work in the same office or thousands of miles apart.
You get it—the culture of collaboration in your own organization has had amazing results on the bottom line; but, your operation needs to expand to keep the momentum growing and your return on investment solid and secure—and, it needs to happen fast.
The amount of time and energy required to interview and hire design and construction professionals will take some time; maybe more time than what you can afford. Not only is the clock ticking; but, collaboration on your design/construction team is of importance to you, as well.
What’s the best solution for your needs, and how do you ensure collaboration is built into the design and construction process?
Growing in popularity as a result of being cost-effective and time-efficient is the design|build delivery method. Unlike the traditional design|bid|build concept, design| build brings design and construction together as one team in a single contractual entity to the owner.
The following gives an overview of why the design|build delivery method works and is gaining traction as the construction delivery method of choice these days:
The design|build team, and the owner work together toward the same goal—to complete a successful project that meets or exceeds expectations and is delivered on schedule and within the established budget.
When the same team that designs the project also builds it, there’s much more attention given to pricing and schedule early on in the design phase.
When an owner opts for design|build, it adds an inherent efficiency and effectiveness to the process, and the probability of something being overlooked is greatly diminished. By creating a single point of accountability, it keeps schedules and budgets on track and produces higher-quality results in less time than traditional methods.
Design|build teams are experts in both design and construction. There is a huge benefit in working with architects that think like builders and builders that think like architects. They have experience with general construction and most likely have strong, lasting partnerships with dependable trades and vendors.
- Trusted Advisor
Design and construction should be exciting, not chaotic. As a trusted advisor, the design|build team guides the way toward the best possible outcome. Design|build creates opportunities for an owner to contemplate major decisions, ask questions, and consider the options.
Transparency is essential because most owners want to understand and be involved in the building process. Design|build promotes a culture of collaboration and communication that isn’t always present in traditional contracting arrangements.
When it comes down to it, effective collaboration is really about trust and care for one another—whether it be in your own organization or within your design/construction team—which makes the design|build construction delivery process a true culture of collaboration.
Business owners and facility managers want to focus on what they do best: running their business and supporting their employees. That is why starting a building expansion or construction project can be a daunting task.
While we highly recommend bringing a contractor on board during the conceptual stage to review the feasibility, constructability, costing, and scheduling components, here are five types of contracts available:
- Design – Build Contract
This is one of the most efficient ways of hiring a contractor. In this option, the general contractor and designer are hired as a team or a single entity. This means that most things are streamlined as there is one contract, one point of communication, and one point of responsibility. Under this type of contract, the length of project and/or budget can significantly decrease.
- Design – Bid – Build Contract
This is the more traditional contract type within the commercial industry. In this option, designers and contractors are hired separately. Designers are hired to give complete design documentation, then the project goes out to contractors to bid. In this scenario, the owner carries the risk of any gaps in the design documentation.
- Construction Management Agency
Like, Design – Bid – Build, under this contract type the designer and contractor are hired separately. However, in this case, the contractor is much more involved in the design phase of the project. In addition to contracts with the designer and the contractor, owners also have the responsibility of contracts with the subcontractors. This is used primarily in the K-12 school market.
- Construction Manager At-Risk Contract
Under this type of contract, the contractor is hired with a guaranteed maximum project price. If that price is exceeded, the responsibility to cover any additional costs lies with the contractor instead of the owner. Because of that, the pre-construction process is heavily relied on to ensure accurate scheduling and budgeting.
- Integrated Product Delivery Contract
The final contract type is one where the owner, designer, and contractor are equally responsible under one joint contract. Everyone wins or loses together. Risk is shared among all parties. This delivery method is all about streamlining the design process to remove excess drawing and time therefore reducing the time to bring a project to construction and delivering in an accelerated manner.
While there are multiple ways to bring on a contractor, knowing your project and what you want out of the contractor you are hiring is essential. When starting a project be sure to keep in mind things like: the amount of trust you have in your contractor, length of time in which you need it completed, what priorities you have in a new space, and how much time you would like to put into each phase of the project. All of these things will help you decide which type of contract is best for you!